Public Domain #7: Rafael Gallegos directs Demetrius by Frederich Schiller
The Tank and Full Circle Theatre Company are producing a monthly staged reading series featuring plays in the public domain with no copyright restrictions. Once a play has entered public domain, it belongs to everyone. It becomes ours to do with as we please. As such, we thought it'd be cool if we offered up some of the creative decision-making to our audiences. We've selected our first seven plays, and seven directors with very different approaches. We had our audiences assign a play to each director.
Demetrius is Schiller's unfinished work based on the ephemeral Russian czar between 1604 and 1605. Demetrius was one of three impostors who claimed to be the son of Ivan the Terrible. Only the first act was completed, in which Demetrius, who believes himself to be the assumed murdered, rightful heir to the throne of the Czars, initiates a war between Poland and Moscow. The act ends when his mother, banished by the seated Czar, receives the news that her son is not dead. Schiller died of Tuberculosis before he could finish the play. He dictated the action for the rest of the play, but we're leaving it up to interpretation.
Rafael Gallegos is a theatre and opera director based in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Rafael is Team Captain/Artistic Director of Conspiracy Laboratory, aka ConLab, an interdisciplinary arts team that creates new work. Rafael currently serves as Theatre Curator for The Tank and directs the FRESH OUT THE BOX series of new experimental theatre. In his work he tries to approximate the liveness of a sporting event on the stage, and he works as if he were a dj remixing a track, sampling an original source and spinning it on its head.
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